Posted: September 21, 2021 in Uncategorized

And here we fucking go.  I bet you four people and seventeen bots who still pay attention, figure I will do a Summerfest fangasm .  But I am not.

Because this is something more important.  it is about how we need to keep providing access to everyday lives for our fellows that have different levels of ability.

We went to the southwest, during HOT HO HOT but the worst part is that SLC airport welcomed is with an exterior ramp, of like 40 or 50 feet in elevation.  you do the math, at 1/12 slope and all the platforms in the median. It was not acceptable, but by the time I got to the top, this stupid thing had made some DVTs in my rebellious body move toward my lungs and I became unable  to functionally breathe. I barely made it, and the airport got me a wheelchair and a very nice man who got me through this ridiculously extensive airport.   DO NOT GO THERE.  But the guy on my  chair was very accommodating and we tipped accordingly.

After SLC airport destroyed me, I spent the rest of our time owes, picking and choosing.  Like when we were at Mesa Verde, where the altitude made it even worse. But at Taliesin West., I was so fervent that I walked all the way through.

And for the rest of our time, I made it an easy time of things, not walking so much and making use of scooters or wheelchairs when available.  picking and choosing the walking tours.  I was thinking for some time that it was High Altitude Disease because we were on Mesa Verde which was high enough to trigger it.  Let’s not string out the result:  It wasn’t.  When I went to the doctor, he sent me to the hospital here we got things tested and adjusted meds and this bastard DVTs had to leave.

And most recently, at Summerfest I told my concert buddy Rory, who is suffering from sciatica and other back distress, that he should not feel embarrassed by calling for a chair of the Wheel.  And at the last day, Rory showed rolling total pirate (he hasn’t figured out how to recover from Covid hair yet)  We had a great time watching Poi Dog Pondering, and he tried out MY mobility device -a knobby cane that also serves as a shillelagh.

But and here is the point

All those places we visited out west.  Every one of them offered some accommodations that might not be able to walk.  Might be differently abled.

and before 1984, that did not exist. Eventually, the ADA lumbered into creation.  As with most civil rights legislation it was ungainly and a mess of compromises, but it basically is designed to allow disabled folks to sue entities that won’t accommodate them.

But that’s not enough, and one of the national standards institutes had a readily availably accessibility standard, that Congress included by reference.  It was not force of law, and there was no enforcement ability anyway, but what it did was allow the various building code enforcement people to adopt it making it a defacto standard

And I recognize George Herbert Walker Bus for signing that fucker into legislation

So now, almost everywhere you go, the pathways, doors and toilets are accessible to people who a generation ago were limited to their own house and porch.

When I was having health issues out west, I was still able to see the museums and the other places.  I carry my cane into Summerfest, and walking is easier.

And because of that, and my encouragement for Rory to ride his wheelchair to the best seats could get, his ticket and chair allowed  him to upgrade to the best available accessible seats to see Guns and Roses.  And he had an excellent time, but it seems his departure was more problematic, which is a whole other story.

And I am fully willing to give a nod to George h.W. Bush for signing that damn thing into law.  Me and my friend have both experienced the benefits of it in recent days.  It was an amazing piece of legislation, and since it happened just after I got my Architectural license, I have seen the difference in public life but I have also experienced the difference in lived experience.

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